Modern-day HEMI® V8 power in a classic Mopar—it’s the stuff dreams are made of.
Today, with the unveiling of Crate HEMI Engine Kits at SEMA in Las Vegas, it’s a reality. Two varieties of kits will allow owners to install 2014 and newer HEMI engines into 1975 and earlier model year cars.
The Mopar 345 Crate HEMI Engine Kit and Mopar 392 Crate Engine Kit have been designed for 5.7L and 6.4L HEMI V8 engines, respectively.
The kits are hailed as a virtual “plug and play” solution for owners. Each includes a power distribution center, a powertrain control module (PCM), engine and chassis wiring harnesses, an accelerator pedal, O2 sensors, ground jumper, air charge temperature sensor and in-depth information sheets.
For drivers craving extra muscle, the benefits are clear. The Mopar 345 Crate HEMI V8 Kit bumps horsepower to 383 and torque to 425 lb-ft for the 5.7L HEMI engine, while the 392 Crate HEMI V8 Kit keeps the 6.4L HEMI engine steady at 485 horses and 472 lb-ft of torque. The kits are designed for manual transmission 5.7L and 6.4L HEMI engines, although the 727, 904 and older four-speed manual transmissions can also be modified to bolt up to the engines.
Additional hardware is also available in kit form, including a power steering expansion kit, AC expansion kit and rear sump oil pan kit. The 345 and 392 Crate HEMI engine Kits are available for purchase at FCA USA LLC dealers and through mopar.com.
The SEMA announcement was attended by several very special guests, notably the Dodge Shakedown Challenger, the Jeep® CJ66 and Mark Worman’s ’71 Plymouth ’Cuda.
The Shakedown Challenger marries classic styling with a snarling 6.4L HEMI V8 under the hood thanks to the new 392 Crate HEMI Engine Kit. Its shaved 1971 Challenger body rides on a one-off custom frame, with a noticeably “coiled” stance from its concept Hellcat Slingshot-designed 19-inch by 9 1/2-inch front and 20-inch by 9 1/2-inch rear wheels. A heritage 1971 Shaker hood scoop is added with select parts from the Mopar brand’s modern-day Shaker hood kit, feeding fresh air to the HEMI engine powerplant. The Shakedown drives 485 horsepower to the pavement via a Viper Tremec T6060 six-speed manual transmission.
The Jeep CJ66 is a different beast—but a beast nonetheless, boasting 383 horsepower and 425 lb-ft of torque. It’s what happens when you take a Jeep Wrangler TJ frame, hang a 1966 Jeep Wrangler CJ universal Tuxedo Park body on it, add in Wrangler JK elements, and power it all with a Mopar 345 Crate HEMI Engine Kit-enabled 5.7L HEMI V8. That’s three generations of Jeep heritage plus a HEMI V8 riding high on giant 35-inch BFG all-terrain tires, wrapped around functional, Jeep Performance Parts (JPP) 17-inch beadlock wheels and paired with a two-inch lift kit. Oversized, concept fender flares offer protection from trail obstacles at the front and rear, with added defense delivered by 10th anniversary JK Wrangler Rubicon Bumper Kits, JPP skid and front bumper plates and concept JPP rock rails custom cut to fit the Wrangler CJ body.
Mark Worman, the Mopar restorer whose shop is featured on the Velocity Channel show Graveyard Carz, jumped at the chance to use the 392 Crate HEMI V8 Kit to put a modern 6.4L HEMI engine into his own ’71 Plymouth ’Cuda. Other than the engine, kit and a tweak to the ’Cuda’s rear HEMI V8 graphic, the build is a pure, ground-up restoration that incorporates more than 100 factory parts supplied by Mopar.
Additional project vehicles utilizing the Crate HEMI V8 Kits displayed in the Mopar SEMA exhibit include a 1975 Dodge Dart injected with a 5.7L HEMI engine with an assist from the 345 Crate HEMI V8 Kit, and a 1950 Dodge pickup powered by a 6.4L HEMI engine/392 Crate HEMI V8 Kit.
If you’ve got a classic Mopar ride from the ’50s, ’60s or early ’70s and you’re curious about giving it some 21st-century HEMI engine horsepower, learn more about the Crate HEMI V8 Kits at mopar.com.